Sniffing Around Jeju #1 Wolpyeong Village

The True Travel Buddy 

One thing I noticed about the reviews or blog posts about their travel with their pet is that they often share information about the cafes or restaurants that allow pets but not trails that are pet-friendly. Dogs need places where they can walk with their owners to pounce and sniff. So in that note, in this episode of "Sniffing Around Jeju," we will introduce good walking areas you can take your furry friends. 

On our way to my house from the airport, Bori couldn't take his eyes off from the window of the car. Maybe the smell of Jeju was new that Bori couldn't stop trying to sniff everything outside from the car. On his first day, I wanted to take Bori everywhere but his eyes were red and he was probably exhausted from the strict diet routine that I thought walking around the neighborhood should wait.

After I unpacked and thought, "maybe he should go for a walk," and looked at Bori, but he was already passed out on the bed. The next morning at 9, we got ready to go outside. I tried to let him sniff everything as much as he wants. Running free is good for dogs for olfactory stimulations are crucial, I heard. This means that going around the neighborhood and sniffing exercise would be the most stress-relieving activity. 

So let us go out for a walk in Wolpyeong Village. Before we left, I took the newly bought leash and the waste bag. Twice a day, Bori defecates during the walk. I must clean after Bori so taking the waste bags are a must. Some ask me, "there are grass fields in Jeju. So isn't it ok to do it there?" But that can't be furthest from the truth. Travelers get to pass by that place maybe once in their lifetime but for those living there, that is the place of everyday living. So cleaning after your pets is a basic thing to do.

One more to keep in mind is that there are what's called the greenhouses in Heju where you dispose the recyclables and regular trash. It is difficult to find trash cans in Jeju so make sure you purchase the regional trash bag and keep gather your trash in them before you dispose them at these greenhouses. For regular trash, the garbage truck will come everyday to collect them. So if you are a traveler, it may be a good idea to dispose the dog's waste in this regional trash bags purchased at stores.

My newly bought leash is a relatively a short lead rope. The reason I got a short leash is because of the cars but also the street dogs. From an article my colleague had sent me, the average number of dog in a household is the highest in the country. But this also means that more dogs are getting abandoned and left in shelter. It also doesn't help that many dogs are not on leash on the island. So there are cases of lost dogs on the island so please be mindful of where your dog is at all time.  

Bori lives in Wolpyeong Village. This is also called as Wolpyeong Flower Village and is located where Olle Course 7 and 8 meets. White lilies bloom during the summer. And the fields of tangerine paint the town orange during the fall. A Buddhist temple, Yacheonsa is nearby and there is Jungmun and Gangjeong on each side of this neighborhood.

As this is near the ocean, keep walking and you'll see the clear blue sky with the endless stretch of the Jeju ocean unravel before you. The great thing about the autumn in Jeju is that you get to see this clean and clear scenery at all time. It's always bright and clear, no sign of groggy or dark clouds! And not to mention the fresh air! Bori probably couldn't stop himself from sniffing the outside because he could smell all this.

The preservation quality of the stonewalls in Wolpyeong is pretty good. Compared to other villages or attractions where they often put cement all over the tall walls, stonewalls here are kept in the way it was meant to be in the original form.

I thing I found most interesting about Wolpyeong is that the fresh tangerines growing by the stonewalls. I've only seen them at supermarkets but have I ever seen them grow on trees in real life! It was common in the village to have tangerine trees which I found so special. They also grew persimmons or dekopons in their yard. If we see the village from the bird's eye view, won't this place look as if the orange paint is scattered around? The tangerines are behind the stonewalls and in our reach. But you shouldn't be tempted to pick them.

Both Bori and I have ate tangerines before but we have never seen it grow. I thought it would be great to remember this moment and took a picture of Bori by the stonewalls with the tangerines. I put way too much effort into taking a photo here. If I put him on low deck, he would jump off from it. And if I put him on high deck, it seemed too dangerous for him. I somehow found the right spot for him. If you'd like to take a picture with a field of tangerines in the background, I high recommend setting the timer. 

As I have previously mentioned, there are many households in Jeju with pets. So it will be easy to see dogs with no leash running around or trying to bark at your dog. And this may be troubling for your dog. To prevent any incidents like this, I would like to share the Safe Walking Route of Wolpyeong Village and share with everyone. The map above of Wolpyeong Village isn't exact but it is to show you the roads for men and auto roads. The green section is the safe route and the circle at the end of green line is the route I take to walk Bori. 

Checkpoint 1: Cerberus of Wolpyeong will start to bark soon Bori and I leave the house. Looking around the neighborhood, you'll only notice the greenhouses around and this will make you wonder where the barking is coming from. And just about to leave the spot, you'll find three white Jindos looking at us from the second floor of a house. The celebrity of Wolpyeong, Cerberus or the three-headed hound of Hades. The picture of the three white dogs on the map is where they live. It has been more than 5 months I came to Jeju but I still haven't got to be close with them. I don't know their genders or names, so I just call them Cerberus or Jindol, Jinsoon and Jingu.

They are very sensitive to sounds. I really don't like to hear them bark so I try to make a huge detour but they just find out and bark at us. Hearing them bark, sensitive Bori begins to bark back at them so it soon get very noisy making this a hard route. If you wonder if they only bark at dogs, you'll be mistaken. With strangers or villagers, they'll still bark with their heart out. And every time they do that, their female owner would come out to say, "hey, hey!!"

If you pass by Wolpyeong and get to see Cerberus, it's not a bad idea to take a picture. It's usually two staring at you but wait a moment until the last one joins to complete the look. 

Checkpoint 2: Childon, beep! Warning, congested area. Most will stop the mouse scroll here. This is Childon, Instagram celeb of Wolpyeong Village. In pork BBQ place in Wolpyeong has a dog which got featured on their Facebook and Instagram page. There is no doubt that this cute furry friend would have helped to make some extra sales.

I'm sure many would like to see this cute guy but keep in mind the two photos were taken on June 2017. And this is November of 2017 as I write this. That's right; five months have passed. Thanks to this poison he drank called time, our Childon is now a full-grown dog.

The cute baby faces and the endless energy are gone and a dashing gentle dog stands. It would have been nice for him to grow a little slower but time surely flies. Childon is the white dog on the map at 10 o'clock location from Cerberus.

Checkpoint 3: This is Jamyeonggo of Wolpyeong at the entrance of the village owned by a house with the stonewall near the guesthouse. According to a tale, Jamyeonggo was a famous self-sounding drum during the first century. And this dog is named after this drum was it barks at people for no reason. Wolpyeong's Jamyeonggo, or simply we call it Wolja. Wolja is cute and tiny but is very sensitive and difficult to get close. With Childon and Cerberus, we got to see each other and get to know one another, but for this little guy, he's only got the grandmother who raises him.

This whole area is difficult to walk. Wolja doesn't wear collar or leashes. The old lady raising this dog leaves the door open so Wolja often sneaks out to see or roams around. Wolja barks a lot so for dogs that do not like to encounter situations like this, you can make a detour (the Safe Walking Route already has made the detour away from Wolja). The location of this guy marked as the white dog on the 1 o'clock from Childon.

Checkpoint 4: Bangwool is located by the only cafe of Wolpyeong (shown in the first picture on the left with the wooden door) and the Italian bistro, Quiète (first picture on the right). If you wish to know more about Quiète, please click www.dailyjeju.co.kr/article/84. I personally like this area the most. There is an open field and a greenhouse behind the restaurant. And there are hardly any elements that would bother our walk. Especially Bangwool, the owner of the cafe's dog, is usually on leash on sunny days peaking out to see us or just sits around. Bangwool is very friendly and get scared easily so no need to worry and most of the times, he isn't there.

One thing to keep in mind is that there are cars coming and going here. It's because of the popularity of Quiète, but also all the roads of the villages leads to here and it doesn't help that there are pensions and guesthouses in the neighborhood.

BE CAREFUL POINT. Please be careful of this area. This is the red circle point on the map. This is dangerous not because there are dogs here but it's difficult to see the incoming traffic. It's because the road is narrow and because of the parked cars, there are blind spots the drivers often cannot see. So if your dog is walking before you, it can pose as a great danger.

Your pet may just be happy enough that it's on a vacation with its owner but if your day has mostly been in a car, let's take a moment to get off in Wolpyeong Village. Seeing Jeju on foot would be difficult not to mention that it would be a great rest for your pet.

On my parting remarks, if you ever see Bori while your walk, let's walk together. Walking with a new friend would be an unforgettable experience for your pet.

<This series was inspired by a book, 제주犬학>

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